Shira Efron

Photo of Shira Efron
Policy Researcher
Santa Monica Office


Ph.D. in policy analysis, Pardee RAND Graduate School; M.A in international affairs/business, New York University; B.Sc. in biology, Tel Aviv University


Shira Efron is a policy researcher and manager of Israel strategic partnerships and outreach with the RAND Center for Middle East Public Policy. She has extensive experience investigating geopolitical trends in the broader Middle East as well as domestic policies in Israel. In addition to her Middle East expertise, Efron's research focuses on Africa, food security, and technology adoption in developing countries. Efron graduated from the Pardee RAND Graduate School with a Ph.D. in policy analysis. In her dissertation she employed a mixed-method approach to examine the feasibility—both technical and non-technical—of using unmanned aerial systems (UAS) for agriculture in Africa. She also has an M.A. in international relations/international business from New York University (NYU) and a B.Sc. in biology and computer science from Tel Aviv University.

Prior to RAND, Efron primarily conducted research and analysis on Middle East issues. She was the policy director and country representative of the Institute for Inclusive Security in Israel. Previously, she was a policy analyst at the Center for American Progress, where she edited the Middle East Bulletin, a multi-weekly online publication for a high-level U.S. government and stakeholder audience focusing on the intersection of U.S. political, economic, and security interests in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia. Efron was also a research analyst at a hedge fund in New York, an editor at the Israeli newspaper Ha'aretz, and a reporter in the Israeli Defense Forces.

Recent Projects

  • Developing Capacity of the Center for Research and Security Studies, Abu Dhabi
  • The costs of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
  • A Simple Decision Support Tool to Assess Potential Public Health Emergency Interventions- Proof-of-Concept and Illustrative Application to Ebola.
  • The RAND Food-Water-Energy Security Index.
  • An Approach for Sustainable Operations at the Maui Space Surveillance Complex.

Honors & Awards

  • PAF Disertation Award, Project Air Force
  • Pardee Dissertation Award, Pardee Initiative for Global Human Progress


  • Yesh Atid on Election Night

    When Winning Means Losing: Israel After the Election

    It is not clear whether or to what extent Netanyahu will abandon his traditional coalition partners on the right and turn toward the fragmented political center. However, such a turn may be necessary, writes Shira Efron.

    Jan 23, 2013 The RAND Blog